Following scathing audit, Virginia launches new unemployment insurance system

The Virginia Employment Commission has launched a new unemployment insurance system aimed at better assisting those who are filing for unemployment benefits.

It’s the final phase in a multiyear effort to modernize the VEC, which, an audit found, handled unemployment claims inefficiently and without much urgency even before the pandemic.

The enhancements, which launched Wednesday, includes online access to documents, improved user experience with dynamic claims filing and a customer dashboard for claims filing status and other inquiry information.

“We are extremely proud of the work our team has invested in this effort. We look forward to the improvements this system will provide to our customers,” Commissioner Ellen Marie Hess said in a statement.

A report presented to Virginia lawmakers last September from the state’s legislative agency found that VEC call centers are “underperforming and serious staffing problems persist,” and it’s been described as “worst-in-the nation response to the surge in jobless claims,”  The Associated Press reported.

Abigail Constantino

Abigail Constantino started her journalism career writing for a local newspaper in Fairfax County, Virginia. She is a graduate of American University and The George Washington University.

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